Monday, October 31, 2005

Taxi Day at the Newark Museum

Only got to do one tour in the morning, but those taxi drivers are a lot of fun! There was a NY Times photographer who followed us around on the tour....but who knows what will make the paper (NJ edition). He asked me for my name...hope I didn't jokingly say something I shouldn't have!

Using the taxicab yellow for this blog...there was a sea of them in front of the Museum. Apparently they have to go through some sort of annual inspection, which is done in the Museum Parking Lot. After they are registered, they come into the Museum for lunch and a tour. The hope is that they will suggest to their fares that the Newark Museum is a great place to visit.

Cab Driver Cab Driver Cab Driver

The top of the cab is black, so you can't see it on the black background. Something new..convertible cabs!

A Fun Sunday

The last day for the Roof & Sol LeWitt. What happy colors in the sun!
The day started well...I'd forgotten about the time change and so I felt like I got an extra hour! Met Cliff at 10:00 am (Thomy had other plans) and we went to the Metropolitan Museum. First, the Van Gogh Drawing Show. I'd been to the Members Preview, but how bad is it to see Van Gogh twice. It's now open to the public and it was pretty crowded.
Starry Night
Then we saw the exhibit of sculpture and architectural pieces by Santiago Calatrava. I want to live in one of the 4-floor apartment cubes he designed for 80 South Street. Imagine an apartment on the river with views on all 4 sides from every floor of the apartment. I'm guessing that I'll have to settle for taking the Path transportation hub he's also designed. On the way out, visited some O'Keeffes, Dove, Klee.

It was a glorious fall day and we got a chance to get on the Met roof for the last day that's it's open, and another look at the Sol LeWitt sculptures. I took a couple more pictures--all that color!

Then a light lunch at the Petrie Cafe, and at 3:00 p.m. a lecture & slideshow by Santiago Calatrava at the Grace Rainey auditorium. His bridges & buildings are both beautiful and functional. What a legacy to leave behind. Calatrava narrated a beautifully photographed slide show of his bridges and buildings throughout the world, with a Mozart soundtrack. How bad is that! I showed Cliff the photo I'd taken of the Calatrava bridge near the Bilboa Guggenheim in Spain. I didn't know it was a Calatrava at the time. I just thought it was beautiful and loved the reflection in the water. If I can find a way to post the photo, I'll add it to this blog.

After the lecture we went to "Prague." That's the show I didn't get to last time. Quite a few galleries and beautifully mounted and lit.

By then it was almost 5:00 pm. It was so balmy out we decided to walk "a bit" along 5th Ave, before catching a cab. Hah! Once you get away from the Museum, all the cabs are either occupied or off duty. Once we reached 57th Street (from 83rd), Cliff suggested we try the Brasserie Cote Basque. Sounded good to me. Had a delicious meal and the newly redecorated space is charming. We continued walking to 34th & 7th Ave, and got to Penn Station in time to catch the 8:03 pm train to Newark Penn Station. Between the Museum and the walk to Penn Station, I'd estimate we'd done between 5-7 miles. Oh, my aching knees & feet! Hopefully, the walk compensated for the wine & desserts at both lunch and dinner. Another 10-hour day...retirement can be exhausting.

Today I have docent duty at the Museum's "Taxi Day." More walking! I guess it wouldn't do if the tour guide asked for a wheelchair.

Sunday, October 30, 2005

I'm Impressed!

Taking the instructor's advice--bring your subject in to make your point. I thought that after seeing numerous photos of lions in Kenya, it was interesting to find a "caged" lion captured in the netting across from the hotel.

A view from the other side of the ballroom of the New York Pennsylvania Hotel.

No, I'm not impressed with my own photos--it's with the bios of the two instructors at yesterday's Nikon class. Bill Durrence has 35 years' experience in editorial, corporate, and commercial wonder he knows his stuff. The other instructor, Michael A. Schwarz is a three-time nominee for the Pulitzer Prize, and was chosen by Life magazine as one of the country's outstanding young photographers. I can't believe he said he does wedding photography...but for who's wedding?

Saturday, October 29, 2005

I Went to School Today

...the Nikon Digital Photography School, that is. I had to catch a cab around 7:30 a.m. to make the 8:03 a.m. train to NYC. The next one was too late for the 9:30 class. The class was on the 18th Floor of the Hotel Pennsylvania, right across from Penn Station. It's been a long time since I've sat in a class for an entire day. We did get 15-minute breaks in the morning and afternoon, and an hour for the non-gourmet box lunch! I felt like a rank amateur among all these folks with their $1500+ Nikon Digital SLR Cameras! They asked about gray cards for white balance, aperture settings, shutter speed, RAW, TIFF, and JPEG. At least I learned that the last (which I use) is pronounced Jay-Peg. Of course, I didn't get to see any of their photos, so maybe they just talk a good game. They showed many of the pro's photos, and I hate to brag, but some of my Botswana & Zimbabwe pictures could stand up to their Kenya pictures!

I did get a lot of helpful material--just what I need, more stuff! The lecturer Bill Durrence is a very experienced, well-traveled photographer and his sessions were helpful and interesting--composition, simplify, fill the frame, isolate, make one point, etc.; when to use flash and when not to, good filters to have (a clear one to protect your lens; a diffuser), when to use various White Balance Modes (I don't even know if I have White Balance modes on either the Nikon or the Sony). My Nikon & Sony digital cameras are sniffingly referred to as "Point & Shoot" cameras.

I now have a Certificate (of course I have to fill in my own name & date), stating I have "Successfully Completed Nikon School Introduction to Digital SLR Photography." Does that move me up from rank amateur to just plain amateur? And I don't even have a Digital SLR camera (nor do I expect to get one soon).

I sat with some pleasant people from NJ at lunch. A woman who teaches Biology told me about an interesting web site: You travel with a photographer/instructor in small groups. A little more involved than the day trip to Jersey City that I arranged for the Museum volunteers in September.

Words--words--words! This is supposed to be about pictures! Well, I did take some with my "point & shoot" Sony. It was sunrise on the train platform in Brick Church this morning, and after the "pros" cleared off the 18th floor, I got a couple of pictures of the view from the Pennsylvania Hotel. I'll download & post them later!

Going to school is exhausting and I need a nap! Snappy

Yes, it's really sunrise at Brick Church Station. Those who know me, know how rare an occasion this is!
Almost sunset. After the 100 or so class participants left, I was able to get a few pictures of the view from the Penntop South Ballroom on the 18th Floor of New York's Hotel Pennsylvania.
A view from another window. Can't quite make out what the painted building facade is all about.

A Face on the Train

A fleeting impression of a woman I saw while I was on the train to Bradley Beach. Posted by Picasa

Thursday, October 27, 2005


OK--so I reparked some of the cars, and shortened the street--it's called Impressionism! Besides, I didn't want all that grey paving.
The view from the porch of my room on a rainy afternoon Posted by Picasa

The Joys of Abstraction - At Last!

I originally thought of this as a first wash of the scene on the shore, to be glazed over with more colors & details--then again--perhaps this is it--it's done.
Did all that flowered wallpaper get to me?
I found a fallen leaf tossed by the wind - Inspiration

Just Water, Paper, Paint; add a little Paste -- Voila! Collage Art
You'd never guess what this was originally--and I'm not telling!
Now that's Abstract!
OK -- It's not a painting. But it is a George O'Keeffe-ish photo of a tiny orchid-like flower that was rescued from the tower of a delicious chocolate dessert at Bistro Ole
And to say goodnight (or morning) with a quote from one of my favorite guys, "To do good work one must eat well...have one's fling from time to time...and drink one's coffee in peace." - June 1888 Vincent
Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

More Victorian Vignettes

The community of Ocean Grove began as a religious retreat; the Auditorium at the center of Ocean Pathway. Wonder how the founders would react to it today.
Some like it light; some like it dark..just like coffee!

A great way to discourage sitters--put a plant on the seat!

Must be a wonderful view from the top floor balcony of this tall Victorian.

Thought I'd switch to a little Black & White - Sensory overload from all the Victoriania & Abstract art -- which I haven't even posted yet! Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Victorian Houses - Ocean Grove

More photos--of course. But until "Blogging for Dummies" comes out, it takes me too much time to download maybe later. I do have other things to do!

Friday evening--across the greensward from the Manchester Inn - The Albatross

A Sunny Sunday in Ocean Grove!

Sunday - Sea, Sand & Sunshine

Sunday sunrise--yes, I was up. That's what happens when you have a room with no PC, no TV, no phone, no radio. You are not plugged into anything. You actually get a full night's sleep and get up at dawn. I can deal with that--for a couple of days.
Sunshine on the charming little porch off my room--which was rain soaked for the first two days of the trip, so I never got to sit!
One of my favorite photos
Sea gulls at the seashore--what else!

Sea, sails, sand and rose hips

Torn between wanting to participate in the painting workshop and seeing the sea. The sea won out!

Well, I did get back in time to toss off a quick study of a spider mum.

Ribbons, Lace and a Faux Fireplace!

Yes, those are rainspots on the lens!
Painted swags & lavender bows....
Real swags, lace curtains & more bows!
More of everything!
Faux fireplace, faux flowers, and a faux painting over the mantel! Interesting atmosphere for working on non-objective abstract painting, don't you think?

From the cold and rainy exterior facing the dark grey sky & sea, to the be-ribboned, lace-trimmed room at the Manchester Inn, with my very own faux fireplace!
Priceline Rental Car Coupon
Priceline Rental Car Coupon